Thursday, July 14, 2005

All Wales Awareness Campaign


The parents of a teenage girl, Danielle Taylor, aged 16, who died after sniffing air freshener for the first time have backed a new campaign on the dangers of solvent abuse.

Schools throughout Wales are receiving posters and leaflets to highlight the fact that sniffing substances kills more young people than all illegal drugs combined.

Her father Bryn said: "No parent should have to go through the loss of a child, especially over something so stupid. It's still not real," said Mr Taylor. "We still expect Danielle to be there."

The four Welsh police forces and the charity Re-Solv (the Society for the Prevention of Solvent and Volatile Substance Abuse) hope to raise awareness among young people of the risks.

Dewi Roberts, a drug reduction officer, said "I was unaware that misusing solvents can kill you on the first occasion and that's a message that a lot of people weren't aware of. It's really important that we tell the community as a whole - young people, parents, schools - of the danger of solvent misuse and that one single experimentation can kill you."

The campaign was launched at the Welsh assembly in Cardiff with the backing of trading standards , who inform retailers about legislation and health risks involved in selling restricted goods to the young.

Welsh Social Justice Minister Edwina Hart said substance abuse in the UK was the highest in the European Union. "This type of substance misuse is a particular problem among younger and more vulnerable children."